Faculty Directory

Shelley Stamp
  • Title
    • Professor of Film and Digital Media
  • Division Arts Division
  • Department
    • Film and Digital Media Department
  • Affiliations American Studies Department, Feminist Studies Department, History of Art/Visual Culture
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Fax
  • Website
  • Office Location
    • Communications Building, 107 Communications
  • Mail Stop Film and Digital Media
  • Mailing Address
    • Film & Digital Media Department, UC Santa Cruz, 1156 High Street
    • Santa Cruz California 95064
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise Film

Summary of Expertise

Silent Cinema, Female Filmmakers, Film Censorship, Histories of Moviegoing, Early Hollywood

Research Interests


A leading expert on women and early movie culture, Shelley Stamp is the author of Lois Weber in Early Hollywood and Movie-Struck Girls: Women and Motion Picture Culture after the Nickelodeon, as well as many articles and book chapters on film censorship, histories of movie-going, and women’s filmmaking. She is currently at work on a comprehensive history of Women and the Silent Screen in America, co-written with Anne Morey. She has lectured widely on her work throughout North America, Europe, Australia, and Japan. Stamp is also Founding Editor of Feminist Media Histories: An International Journal and co-editor of two collections: American Cinema’s Transitional Era: Audiences, Institutions, Practices and a special issue of the journal Film History on “Women and the Silent Screen.” Her expert commentary is featured on DVD releases of rare silent films and she has served as a consultant for organizations including the National Film Preservation Foundation, EYE Film Institute Netherlands, Turner Classic Movies, and American Movie Classics. In 2012 she co-curated the first international retrospective of Lois Weber’s films for Il Cinema Ritrovato in Bologna, Italy.  A recipient of grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Stamp has been a visiting scholar at the University of Melbourne in Australia, Bryn Mawr College, the University of Colorado at Boulder, Queen’s University in Canada, and the Hildegard Festival of Women in the Arts. She is Professor of Film & Digital Media at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she holds the Pavel Machotka Chair in Creative Studies.

Biography, Education and Training

Ph.D., Cinema Studies, New York University
M.A., Cinema Studies, New York University
B.A., Cinema Studies, University of Toronto

Honors, Awards and Grants

Lois Weber in Early Hollywood named to Huffington Post's Best Film Books of 2015

Pavel Machotka Chair in Creative Studies, UC Santa Cruz, 2014-17

Macgeorge Visiting Fellow, University of Melbourne, Australia, 2013

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, 2012

Film Scholars Grant, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, 2003

University of California President's Research Fellowship in the Humanities, 2001

Finalist, Theater Library Association Book Award, Movie-Struck Girls, 2000

Movie-Struck Girls name a Choice Outstanding Academic Title, 2000

Hon. Mention, Katherine Singer Kovacs Essay Prize, Society for Cinema and Media Studies, 1998

Excellence in Teaching Award, UC Santa Cruz, 1997

Screen Award for Excellence in Screen Studies (Joint Winner), 1995

First Runner-Up, Dissertation Prize, Society for Cinema and Media Studies, 1995

Jay Leyda Memorial Dissertation Prize, New York University, 1994

Selected Publications


  • Lois Weber in Early Hollywood (University of California Press, 2015).
  • Movie-Struck Girls: Women and Motion Picture Culture After the Nickelodeon (Princeton University Press, 2000).
  • American Cinema's Transitional Era: Audiences, Institutions, Practices, co-edited with Charlie Keil (University of California Press, 2004).
  • "Women and the Silent Screen." A special issue of Film History 18, no. 2 (2006), co-edited with Amelie Hastie.


  • “Critics, Reformers, and Educators: Film Culture as a Feminine Sphere.”  In Silent Women: Pioneers of Cinema.  Ed. Melody Bridges and Cheryl Robson.  London: Aurora Metro Books, 2015, 257-81. 
  •  “Lois Weber at Rex:  Performing Femininity Across Media.”  In Performing New Media, 1890-1915.  Ed. Scott Curtis, Frank Gray and Tami Williams.  New Barnet, England:  John Libbey Publishing, 2014, 13-21. 
  • “Lois Weber.”  In Fifty Hollywood Directors.  Ed. Yvonne Tasker and Suzanne Leonard.  New York:  Routledge, 2014, 45-53.
  •  “Women and the Silent Screen.” In The Wiley-Blackwell History of American Film  Vol. 1:  Origins to 1928.  Ed. Roy Grundmann, Cynthia Lucia, and Art Simon.  Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2012, 181-206. 





  • "1916: Movies and the Ambiguities of Progressivism." In American Cinema of the 1910s: Themes and Variations. Ed. Charlie Keil and Ben Singer.  Newark, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2009, 60-82.
  • “Lois Weber and the Celebrity of Matronly Respectability.” In Looking Past the Screen: Case Studies in American Film History and Method.  Ed. Jon Lewis and Eric Smoodin. Raleigh, NC: Duke University Press, 2007, 89-116.
  • “Presenting the Smalleys, ‘Collaborators in Authorship and Direction’.” Film History 18, no. 2 (2006): 119-28.
  • “Lois Weber, Progressive Cinema and the Fate of ‘Our Work-A-Day Girls’ in Shoes.” In Camera Obscura 56 (2004): 140-69.
  • "It's a Long Way to Filmland": Starlets, Screen Hopefuls and Extras in Early Hollywood." In American Cinema’s Transitional Era: Audiences, Institutions, Practices. Ed. Charlie Keil and Shelley Stamp. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2004, 322-52.
  • "An Awful Struggle Between Love and Ambition: Serial Heroines, Early Celebrity and Modern Femininity." In Silent Cinema Reader.  Ed. Lee Grieveson and Peter Kramer. New York: Routledge, 2003, 210-25.
  • "Taking Precautions, or Contraceptive Technology and Cinema's Regulatory Apparatus." In The Feminist Reader in Early Cinema.  Ed. Jennifer Bean and Diane Negra.  Raleigh, NC: Duke University Press, 2002, 270-97.
  • "Moral Coercion, or the Board of Censorship Ponders the Vice Question." In Controlling Hollywood: Censorship and Regulation in the Studio Era.  Ed. Matthew Bernstein  Newark, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1999, 41-58 .


  • Traffic in Souls, Perils of the New Land, Flicker Alley, 2008.
  • Where Are My Children?, Treasures from American Film Archives III, National Film Preservation Foundation, 2007.
  • The Blot, Milestone Video, 2003.

Teaching Interests

History of American Film, Silent Cinema, Film Noir, Censorship & the Production Code, Female Filmmakers